Let me just say my husband is a genius. Don’t tell him I said so, but it’s true. He would say it was about time I realized this. The truth is, I’ve always realized it. I just don’t want him to get a big head.
The reason I think he is a genius right now is because I’m in a resort in St. Lucia. You see, while I’m the one who managed to get this job, he’s the one who pushed me. Twenty years ago, I saw an ad in the newspaper that said, “Become a mystery shopper,” and I responded. Of course, when I got the information in the mail, it said to send $25 to get the real information. With that, I was disappointed, but I planned to throw the packet away. My parents had taught me a long time ago that you don’t pay to work. It just doesn’t make sense.
So, when Mr. Everything got home from work, I told him how disappointed I was about the mystery shopping info. I told him they wanted $25 so I was ditching that idea. He said, “Do it.” I told him that was crazy because they were just going to take our money. He shrugged and said, “We’ve wasted $25 on dumber things. Take the chance.” So I did!
I sent away for the info, and I received a list of about ten mystery shopping companies. I had to send in a handwriting sample and a sample paragraph so they could tell that I could write complete sentences and they could read what I wrote. We’ll just call that “back in the day.”
Now, mystery shopping companies would laugh at you if you hand wrote anything. Everything has to be submitted online and receipts have to be uploaded. There is no faxing or mailing in forms anymore. Boy, things have changed in 20 years.
I often think, though, if Mr. E had not convinced me to take a chance, I would have missed out on so much! We’ve been to amazing restaurants, great hotels and even all inclusive resorts because of that $25 chance. He really was smart to let me take the gamble.
(Now, let me just say, with the internet, you should never, ever pay for a list of mystery shopping companies. If you want to get started, read my blogs HERE and HERE for free, and you’ll learn what you need to know. If you just feel the need to pay someone for the information, I accept cash, check or Paypal. You can send me any amount you want.)
Because of Mr. E’s willingness to take a $25 chance, we got to visit a resort in St. Lucia. I’m pretty sure this is the best resort ever, or at least, it’s the best one I’ve ever visited! I must admit, we’ve spent a good portion of our time avoiding the sun while we’ve been here. Since Mr. E still can’t be out in the sun because he was burned in July, we can’t be on the beach in the middle of the day. I’m okay with that. I’m the freckle and burn queen anyway, so the sun and I don’t get along very well anyway. I wasn’t sure how the trip would go since we are on a tropical island where there is usually sun. However, we’ve found plenty to do while we’ve been here.
We visited the spa the other day. There were no massages involved, so it was great. This resort has a complimentary area of the spa. (As the saying goes…If it’s free, it’s for me!) This area includes a Jacuzzi and plunge pool that are both shaded by a gazebo. There were also saunas and steam rooms, but we discovered quickly that sitting in either one was boring and hot. The plunge pool was way too cold for our Floridian blood, but the Jacuzzi was just right. We sat in the hot water, with the gazebo sheltering us from the sun. There was a nice cool breeze blowing, and the palm fronds were rattling in the wind. As we sat there, I thought, “It just doesn’t get any better than this.” I was wrong. It does get better.
We also found a pier that was out over the water. At night, it was so peaceful to sit out there on the comfortable couches. There was a fire pit nearby if we got cool in the night air. It was wonderful just to sit out there and look at the stars and listen to the waves. As I sat there, I though, “It can’t get any better than this.” I was wrong. It did get better.
The resort had catamarans that could be taken out into the water. They are easy to operate and fun to ride on. Mr. E, of course, had no problem controlling the boat, because he’s Mr. E. He knows how to do everything, remember? So, we took the boat out and sailed away into the sunset. Okay. Really, it was in the middle of the day, but still - you get the point. The sky was cloudy, and while the other resort guests were probably disappointed about that, we were thrilled! It meant we could go outside without risking more damage to my husband’s pretty face. So, as we sailed, I thought, “This is as good as it gets.” I was wrong. It got better.
We discovered a part of the resort that we referred to as “Old People Island.” We fit right in. See, at the main pool, the atmosphere was lively. The music was pumping and people were sunbathing, swimming, etc. It was fun, but you couldn’t hear the water. At Old People Island, the beach was far enough from the action of the main pool that we could hear the water. We could hear the birds chirping. We found a tiki covering with two chairs underneath, and we lounged. As I avoided the sun in the shade, I thought, “It just doesn’t get any better.” I was wrong. Boy, did it get better.
Near Old People Island, we found a pool for old people. Well, it wasn’t really for old people, but that was who was there. It was so serene, and there was no music playing. It was wonderful. As I floated in the pool, I thought, “I’m cold.” I was right. I was cold, not because it was cold outside, but because I’m a wimpy Floridian. We got out of the pool to warm up.
We found another perfect hang out. In the ocean were floats that were somehow anchored to the ground. I called them spots, because they were round and, well, they looked like spots. (I’m creative, aren’t I?) On a cloudy day, we finally got a chance to swim out to a spot. When we climbed in, we found an oasis in the sea! In the spot, we were in the ocean and could feel the waves. However, we were anchored down and didn’t have to worry about floating away. It was wonderful, and I didn’t have to worry about anything biting my butt or toes. I loved the spot, until I got cold. I always get cold.
We went back to Old People Island and visited the Jacuzzi by the pool. In the Jacuzzi, we could be in the hot water and see the beautiful pool and amazing beach. As I warmed in the Jacuzzi, I thought, “Now, I’ve seen the best. It can’t get any better.” I was wrong. It did.
We found a hammock that was shaded by a tiki covering. We visited this hammock several times during our trip. It was wonderful. We just talked and swayed in the hammock. We also were quiet and listened to the birds. Our view was of a palm tree and the beautiful blue sky. As we enjoyed the hammock, I thought, “I have found the perfect place.” I was right. St. Lucia was, indeed, the perfect place. -Al
I wanted to be sure and thank my mother and my friends who watched after the Beetle and the Goose while we were gone. I was nervous about leaving the country without my little ducklings. Thank you, thank you, thank you to Mama and all those who kept them happy, fed and safe! I deeply appreciate it, and we had an awesome trip because I didn't have to worry!